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Author Topic: Making sure your truck starts  (Read 4477 times)

Offline Rob

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Making sure your truck starts
« on: December 07, 2008, 06:59:42 pm »
Parking your truck at the end of some remote bush road for the week while you are gone there is usually no plug ins. How do you ensure your truck or whatever you drive starts after being parked in -40 temps for a week?
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Offline Georgi

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2008, 07:17:33 pm »
Not that I have a truck but I wondered if you could bury the nose into a drift sort of like the upside down water bottle idea? insulate/protect the truck from blowing snow through the grill??

I've heard of a friend starting a small fire under the engine to warm it up enough to be able to start. But I have no first hand trial or error on that.....

IN ICE WE TRUST ,In Snow we must, go camp in frozen Country. With axe and Saw for Timber is Law, to make our homes more comfy
;)



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Offline HOOP

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2008, 08:51:40 pm »
I have done that once.    A week-long trip where it was -30 to -35 in the day, and -40ish at nights.  My old Nissan truck was 10 years old at the time - but it had a relatively new battery and alternator.   For the cost of a battery, I think it pays in the north to replace it when its getting old, even if you don't think it needs replacing. 

The Nissan started fine (like it always did - I am now driving a Toyota like yours, but still expect similar performance - best light trucks in the world). 

Although I have never done it, and this may be a northern bush myth, I have heard that some northerners carry a propane torch and canvas tarp.   Drape the tarp over the hood and down to the ground, and run the torch underneath.  Make sure you don't set your truck on fire!!!!!!!   Any oil drippings on the pan could ignite!    The bush plane pilots use a propane burner rig and tarp to heat their engines on the ice.  Maybe ask around town to see what a mod for a truck might look like.  But I am thinking your truck should be fine if you are using the block heater when in town - the battery should stay in good shape. 

Good to have a SAT phone with you just in case for the long remote trips.

Another northern tip:   Carry a bicycle pump in your truck.  In extreme cold, the rims can contract and spring a slow leak around the tire bead.   On that trip I mentioned, I had 2 flat tires when we came out at -35.   Good thing I packed the pump!   
« Last Edit: December 07, 2008, 08:54:37 pm by HOOP »
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"I firmly believe that far from hurting the planet, the growing knowledge of Bushcraft is helping our natural world. When we employ bushcraft skills, it may seem as though we are consuming natural resources.  But of course, the more we learn about the trees, the plants, the animals around us, the more we respect them. The more we respect them, the more we cherish them, the more we nurture and take care of them. That is the underlying principle of Bushcraft.

Offline Canoedog

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2008, 09:33:36 pm »
Lived in Nezah, Ontario for one winter, -45 and I had to get my truck started for a trip to T Bay. Plugged in for 12 hrs and still wouldn't go - got out the old bag of charcoal, put it in a pan and fired it up, tarp over the hood and down to the ground and slid the pan under the truck's oil pan - 2 hrs later we're on our way. No open flames, just heat  8) Have used this method several times since (must be a learning problem :D)
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Offline Ted

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2008, 01:18:59 am »
I have a solar trickle charger that I put in the window. It keeps the battery nice and warm and fully charged. So far it has fired up first time every time. Fingers crossed.

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Offline Rob

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2008, 01:45:39 pm »
I like the charcoal trick. It is only slightly cheaper than a sat phone.
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Offline HOOP

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2008, 03:00:00 am »
Trickle charger eh?   I like it.   I can't keep up with all the technology and tricks of the trade.   It's on the Xmas list now.

I am really liking the charcoal trick.   I might just put a cheapo tarp, high edged baking pan and small bag of charcoal in my truck just for such emergencies.   I carry gas line antifreeze.  Does it ignite like methyl hydrate?  (is it the same thing or diluted?)  It might be a good starter for the charcoal?

My Youtube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/Wintertrekker

"I firmly believe that far from hurting the planet, the growing knowledge of Bushcraft is helping our natural world. When we employ bushcraft skills, it may seem as though we are consuming natural resources.  But of course, the more we learn about the trees, the plants, the animals around us, the more we respect them. The more we respect them, the more we cherish them, the more we nurture and take care of them. That is the underlying principle of Bushcraft.

Offline dks

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2008, 08:47:40 am »
Ted, I'm curious to know if the solar trickle charger you have is the type that is sold at Canadian Tire? I think around $99???

yukon

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2008, 04:05:39 pm »
I had this issue while caribou hunting on the Dempster Highway, between dawson City Yukon and Inuvik NWT.  We removed the truck battery and placed it in the wall tent. A few days later we used a coleman peak one ( started in the wall tent too) to sit under the block to heat it. Then we put the battery in and were away.-45 and a wind.
This would not work well if you camped miles and miles from your truck, but we were hunting by skidoo so it wasn't an issue.( They were buried up to the top of the hood for insulation, drive belt removed etc.)
Trickle charger? Great technology , but it still looks to me like a solution in search of a problem. I took mine out after snow on the windsheild rendered it useless.

Oh, and a truck with lots of miles on it and poor compression seems to turn over more easily, so take the beater.

Offline White Wolf

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2008, 04:43:24 pm »
Ted is right one. If your battery is kept warm and fully charged the vehicle should start. In addition using the charcoal as a block heater is a good idea and have seen this done before in Churchill Manitoba. Word of caution be very sure there is no flames left from the charcoal and that the engine is clean under there as the heat from the charcoal could ignite it.

If the solar panel can be hung up from the back window of the truck it should still be able to produce power for the charge. Have seen people use the panel by mounting it on the vehicle antenna this way there is no chance that snow will cover it.

Jeff
Kenora Ont

Offline Georgi

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2008, 05:04:01 pm »
Gas line antifreeze kept my hands warm when I was younger at a a local gas station when fuel was still measured by the gallon and Full Service was the norm.....We'd put it in metal ashtrays and light. It's hard to see its burning as well....
IN ICE WE TRUST ,In Snow we must, go camp in frozen Country. With axe and Saw for Timber is Law, to make our homes more comfy
;)



Georgi

Offline Ted

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solar trickle charger
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2008, 08:45:49 pm »
It's a Canadian Tire Eliminator 5.5watt. I just checked the cost and it's $70 although I got mine on sale for about 50. I attach it directly to the battery via a couple of two prong connectors.  I hang it in the cab on a side window (not the windscreen - too much snow) in a south facing direction.   I also have a fuse that disconnects all the little electrics in the truck. Pull it out was well.

The first time I used the solar panel, I plugged it directly into the cigarette lighter/power plug. I didn't know that on my truck, input power there is the same as putting the ignition key in the accessory position. As I parked after dark and left before sun-up, I didn't notice until I came back mid-afternoon and heard the CD playing in the truck. Lesson learned.

fwiw,
ted
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Offline northernbc

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Re: Making sure your truck starts
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2008, 12:14:26 pm »
i live in northern b,c. and work with heavy equipment there are times when we have to shut it off and leave out in very cold . it is alwahs tarped and a kerosene heater lg size is used for a hour or so before start up. growing up in the yukon i can remember stories about people using tarps and camp stoves under there vehicles if they were being stubborn . up here we usually run a thinner oil o-30 in the winter and this helps also. i would say that if your vehicle is froze up tarp it with what ever you have and light stove underneath engine  no problems .